GRAY, Tenn. (WJHL) – As the nation continues to mourn victims of mass shootings in Texas, Buffalo and Oklahoma, mothers in the Tri-Cities are discussing gun violence and how they can work towards positive change.
“We’re heartbroken, devastated, me personally, being a mom of a school age child, I can’t even fathom how that feels,” Jessi Fuchs, Tri-Cities group lead of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, said.
Members said they want lawmakers to step up and do something.
“I think we also need to regulate guns like we do anything else,” Kingsport resident Sharon Brown said. “We have to have licenses to drive cars, to get married.”
The group doesn’t just seek to end mass shootings, but also ones that hit a little closer to home, like domestic-related shootings and self-inflicted gunshot wounds.
Kisha Smith works with Johnson City’s “Safe House” a place that helps survivors of violence in the Tri-Cities.
“When police suspect that there is access to guns or any kinds of lethal means that’s like automatically when we will open up safe house and just immediately take someone because that is such a danger to someone’s life,” Smith said. “We’re glad to be there.”
Moms Demand Action created bags and donated toys for survivors to the group in honor of Gun Violence Awareness Day.
“A lot of people don’t realize that there is gun violence taking part in every size community, every single day,” Fuchs said.